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Trichotillomania (Hair-Pulling) or Excoriation (Skin-Picking)

Trichotillomania, also known as hair-pulling disorder, and excoriation, known as skin-picking disorder, are both classified in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) as body-focused repetitive behaviour disorders. These disorders are characterized by compulsive self-grooming behaviours that involve pulling, picking, or otherwise damaging one's own body hair or skin, often to the point of physical damage and considerable psychological distress.

• If you find yourself unable to resist the urge to pull your hair or pick at your skin.
• When your hair-pulling or skin-picking is causing you significant distress in your daily life.
• If your compulsive behaviour has led to noticeable hair loss or skin damage.
• When attempts to quit or reduce the behaviour have been unsuccessful.
• If your hair-pulling or skin-picking becomes a way to cope with negative feelings or emotions.

Treatment for these disorders can involve various forms of therapy, with cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) being particularly effective. This approach helps you identify and understand your triggers, learn healthier coping strategies, and work towards reducing the frequency and intensity of your behaviours.

Living with these disorders can feel isolating, but remember, you are not alone. If you find that you're struggling, reach out to our team of professional psychologists who are here to help guide you through this journey. Contact us today to take the first step towards managing these behaviours and reclaiming control over your life.

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